Visual art has the power to communicate powerful messages — it’s also a reflection of the minds and movements of the generation it hails from. It’s said that the Impressionist art movement developed as a reaction to the rise of photography; when people were able to capture literal snapshots of reality via camera, a small group of artists began creating paintings using visible brushstrokes with gorgeous colors as a reaction. In the 1960s, Andy Warhol lead the pop art movement with paintings of well-known products, most famously a Campbell’s soup can, as a reaction to the rise of consumerism. Banksy has created some of the most powerful and iconic street art of our time in order to raise awareness for social and political issues of the modern era.
Two Swiss artists, Christian Rebecchi and Pablo Togni, also aim to raise awareness for issues that they hold near and dear to their heart. According to Rebecchi and Togni, one of the main themes in their work includes exploring “the relationship between mankind and nature.” You can see that theme in the mural below, titled “Exhausting machine.” In it, a polar bear can be seen trapped inside a plastic bottle.
A single-use bottle is an object that many of us have purchased at one point in our lives without a second thought and this powerful mural confronts the viewer with the cost of that convenience.
Ever year, 300 million tons of plastics are put into circulation, but only about 15 percent are recycled. Sadly, 8.8 billion tons of plastic trash end up in the ocean – and out of that, 40 billion pieces are plastic bottles.
This striking mural illustrates a very downstream impact of this problem. It is estimated that 700 marine species are threatened with extinction due to plastic – and though they are a land species, polar bears readily feel this impact as well.
While we can certainly improve the way we recycle, what it comes down to is changing the way that we use plastic. By choosing to avoid single-use plastic to the extent of our abilities, we can reduce the impact that we have on wildlife and our oceans. We can do that by making simple changes, such as using totes in place of shopping bags and ditching plastic water bottles in favor of reusable bottles. Hopefully, Rebecchi and Togni’s message will be realized by all who see it and this beautiful mural will make others think about who our plastic effects once we’re done with it.
Start Crushing Plastic Today
If we all make an effort to identify where we use plastic and actively look for alternatives, we can drastically cut down on the amount of plastic pollution that finds its way into the oceans.
As the leading organization at the forefront of the conscious consumerism movement, One Green Planet believes that reducing everyday plastics from our lives is not about giving up anything or sacrificing convenience, but rather learning to reap the maximum benefit from the items you use every day while having the minimum impact.
Let’s #CrushPlastic! Click the graphic below for more information.
All image source: NEVERCREW